Film ID:
NEFA 19936



Visitor Tabs


A comprehensive record produced by Turners Film Productions of the construction of the Byker Viaduct (also known as the Byker Metro Bridge) using precast, prestressed concrete segments, designed to carry road and Metro traffic across the Ouseburn, a tributary of the River Tyne, in Newcastle city centre.

Title: This viaduct was the winner of the Concrete Society award for Civil Engineering 1980.

The film opens with a panoramic shot of the Byker Viaduct snaking its way through the Ouseburn Valley, carrying road and rail traffic.

Various shots record segments of the bridge and picture the new construction against the blue sky.

The next section of the film records key stages in its construction, with the building of four high level cantilevers to help span the gap of the valley. Column contsruction is first shown in a sequence of still images.

Contractors Mowlem cast the segments on site. In the fabrication area, new cages are made by workers each day. A casting is transported to the stacking yard to vacate the space for the next casting cycle.

The cage is moved across to the casting machine for placing. The vertical and horizontal alignment of segments is tested. Adjustments are made with survey work to get the precise alignment.

The concreting of the day's segment takes place. The segment is covered with a sheet and left to set overnight in climate-controlled conditions.

Workers continue with their surveying.

Segments for high and low levels are stored in the stacking yard on site.

Erection work is started on the low level section located next to a busy road.

In the Ouseburn valley, work begins on the 3rd of 4 cantilever sections. A gantry is positioned on top of a high column.

Segments are shackled to a railway bogie fabricated by the contractors Mowlam that moves down a bank to its position, movements controlled by a worker on telephone. Work takes place on the east and west faces of the cantilever sections. The old Ouseburn Viaduct is directly next to the construction site for the new Byker Viaduct.

Workers mix the epoxy resin glue on the construction and wear protective clothing to apply the glue to joins. Workers use Macalloy tension bars for the stressing of glued joints. Cables are threaded through the structure to provide cantilver stressing.

The gantry moves along the newly contsructed part of the viaduct.

Various shots record the erection of the last section in the cantilever. Workers grout the top of the already constructed segment. The work is almost complete on the viaduct.

Span cables are threaded internally, a worker oiling them as they move through into position.

The final sequences on film document the beautifully sinuous and simple structure of the high-level Byker Viaduct. The final shot repeats the panoramic shot of the viaduct, which opened the film.

Credit: A Production for the Main Contractor John Mowlem & Co Ltd., Brentford UK

Credit: by Turners Film Productions, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK

Credit: Client: Tyne & Wear Passenger Transport Executive

Credit: Consulting Engineers: Ove Arup and Partners. Architects: Renton Howard Wood Levin Partnership

Credit: MLM Mowlem